Unreasoning Fear

Scene played out on 17th July 2011 between the GM (David-Visage) and Kayla's player.

«Session Starts»

There he was. Looking at her oddly again.

Kayla wasn't sure what she should feel about the white guy who was, apparently, some sort of 'associate' of her fathers. Not a friend who she might have heard about, too young to be an old friend of dad's, so maybe just a patient who'd gotten on well with him?

The first time she'd seen him, just a brief meeting a little after hours at her parents clinic, something inside her had sort of hitched and a brief warmth and flooded her. It was a little jolt and it had been a little too… something to be love like the romance novels she 'borrowed' from mom talked about.

And not the sort of feelings that those other romance novels either. It was a jolt of something and a heat which, rather than inside her like when reading those books, was more in her hands than elsewhere. She'd felt that heat, and tingle, in her hands the moment he'd first looked at her and remembered the way that his eyes had widened as though in surprise.

That had been the first time she'd seen him, but he'd been around more often since then and even occasionally with gifts. Talking to her parents privately and introducing himself to her with them specifically present. Her parents hadn't been worried since then but more… a little concerned and, with both being doctors, that had resulted in way too many 'quick tests' which were 'just in case'.

Finn, that was his name, apparently needed to talk to her about something today and a trip to one of the city parks had been arranged. Mom and dad would be there, in sight, but apparently it was something he needed to talk about privately.

The park was quiet and a little cool as the day faded, warm enough that even a sweater wasn't needed. The picnic table was still burdened with the reminants of the food, so much food that even that embaressing -hunger- she'd had lately had been sated by it, as mom gave her a quick hug then both of her parents moved away to a bench well within sight… but outside of earshot.

With butterflies in her stomach, Finn was sort of a cool older guy after all, Kayla looked at him and…

Kayla went away and, inside her head, Kayla was there instead.

<GameServ> Kayla rolled 1d20: 7 <Total: 7(+12) = 19> Retroactive First Aid check to work out what they were testing her for.

…Oh, -god-. It's not like I'd ever forget that face. Not after what happened- But it… he's -dead-!

"You…" I stammer, voice faltering as the blood drains from my face.

"…dead?" Finn asked in complete confusion about this change in attitude. After all a moment ago he'd just been egging her on to eat -another- slice of that tempting chocolate mudpie before it 'went to waste'. Shaking his head he said, "Calm down a sec. Are you okay? You want your parents back over?"

"I…" I forcefully shake my head from side to side, avoiding his gaze. "N-no, it's just…" And now I don't even know -what- to say. Not to the man who attacked me and I killed and now we're having a -picnic- with my parents around… And I don't think I can do anything about it without looking completely crazy.

Finn looked at Kayla, seeming a touch worried, then reached out and carefully turned her hand palm up. His hand was pleasently warm against her own, pale and a little rough, "Kayla… I was going to do this a different way, but… Can you tell me what's wrong or do you want me to distract you?"

Kayla almost instantly jerks her hand away from him, clenching it into a fist and holding it close to her chest. "No." My voice is shaky, but my glare isn't. "You… you stay out of my head…" I start to edge down the picnic bench, moving away from him.

Finn jerked back, obviously surprised, and asked, "In your head? I'm not doing anything." He shot a glance towards Kayla's parents, gave a shrug, and turned back to her, "Kayla… You noticed a few 'changes' in things recently? Maybe feeling differently about stuff, maybe weird things happening about you… Maybe a little glow where there shouldn't be one?"

I don't think I can get up and walk away… but I'm not sitting next to him anymore, right? I kind of hunch over at my end of the table, keeping a quiet, wary eye on him as I try to sort things out in my head. Let him interpret my silence however he wants.

Finn reached into the basket, an -actual- picnic basket like Yogi Bear might have seized, which he'd brought a mirror. It was a small handmirror, backed with red plastic, obviously cheap and intended for a far younger girl than Kayla. Taking his prompt from her wariness he slid if over towards her and began to speak, "It's nothing to be afraid of, Kayla. You've not looked at your own eyes much lately, have you? Your parents have noticed and it's a giveaway. They still love you and everything. I'm just here the help you."

"…I'm a mutant," I say softly, not looking down at the mirror. "That's what you're saying."

He chuckled, a reassuring sound, "Yeah. Welcome to the Human Race v2.0. No need to rush towards the finish line, you already got a prize…"

My lips quirk slightly at the half-joke. "Yeah… and you're one, too. Right?"

He made a small gesture with his hand and a paper plate, with that extra slice of pie already on it, slid somewhat slowly across the table as he replied, "If I'm not then I'm -really- confused…"

Kayla half-flinches at the unexpected movement and the memories it supplies, but manages to dampen her reaction to a certain extent. "So." She keeps watching him with those wary eyes.

"The first time I saw you I didn't think much at first. You were just a girl, a flatline, a bit cute but not much else." Finn admitted quietly, "But then I saw you do… something. There was a little glow in your hands which sort of vanished when you saw I'd seen it. That makes you special. One of -us-. Can you trust me enough to say what it was you did?"

<GameServ> Kayla rolled 1d20: 20 <Total: 20(+6) = 26> Bounces first attempt at empathic influence.

"…they got hot- no, well, warm, I guess," I say quietly. "And… tingly? prickly?"

"Just that one time?" He asked carefully, "And you haven't tried to make it happen again?"

I shake my head.

"Can you try it now?" He asked, his tone carefully level, "Just point your hands away from anything, towards the ground, and see if you can feel that 'tingle' again?"

Kayla breathes out and holds one hand off the side of the table. The memories are nice and fresh, letting that feeling of panicked anxiety run through me… enough to get that little itch that goes 'hey, I'm ready if you need a knife', but not taking the full force of it to actually bring one into being.

Heat and that little tingle flared, not like a stab of pain but instead like a leg which had fallen to sleep suddenly regaining circulation. This was a feeling that she hadn't known that she had missed as, in her hand, a faint blue glow played as though waiting to form into something.

Kayla half-smiles, then summons the effort to make the tingling go away, breathing out hard as she pushes the power back in without summoning anything.

A light 'jolt' surges up her arm, through her, and seems to disapate into her body… somewhere. For a moment her head swims and that pie looks -really- tempting. She didn't recall just reabsorbing the energy being that hard but, the last time, she'd practiced more before learning that little trick.

"Mmm…" She closes her eyes, shaking her head a little. "Wow."

"Well done. Really well done." Finn murmured, obviously trying to be reassuring, "You want to go talk to your parents now? Now that we know you're not going to blow something up by accident just now?"

Kayla feels her face warm at the compliment, looking over at her parents. "Um…" She glances back at the slice of pie.

He chuckled, the college aged boy looking at her in an approving way which brings to mind certain… novels again, "Go on, eat. I think you're an energiser or something and you'll need to eat a lot. But you won't put on any weight from it so remember to cheer when other girls go on diets…"

She tries out a smile… and it doesn't feel -that- unnatural as she picks up her fork and starts going through the slice of pie faster than she intended to.

"Finish that off, try getting that 'tingle' a few times, then eat anything you want." Finn said as he started to stand, "I'll just go talk to you mom and dad about what you might need to learn, schools and stuff, but you should relax. Your dad? He knows a few people and we'll handle it all."

Kayla nods and swallows. "Okay…" She looks back at her parents as Finn walks over to them, watching the three of them as she keeps eating.

<GameServ> Kayla rolled 1d20: 17 <Total: 17(+6) = 23> Save against 'Focus on the food, not the conversation' suggestion passes.

<GameServ> Kayla rolled 1d20: 13 <Total: 13(+5) = 18> Perception check to listen in doesn't make it properly.

While the pie was good, and her stomach sang praises to the sugar content, the combination of a favorable breeze and ears which were better than one might expect brought snatches of the conversation to Kayla. More tone and a few words than everything being said, but it was enough to get some hints as to what was being talked about. Her father's low rumbling voice, her mother's faintly worried but controlled tone, and Finn's slightly oily persuasion which seemed his normal way of talking. Words and phrases like "Whateley", "needs to learn", "family", "problems", "truce", "testing", and "listen to me"…

Kayla eyes the picnic basket… then pulls it over to take a look inside for additional snacks; still trying to keep an ear on her parent's conversation.

A fair ammount remained in the basket, which was hamper sized rather than a small thing which was easily toted about, with everything from some cold chicken to some breadcrumb coated balls about the size of a small fist. Most of what hadn't already been opened was still in the deli packages and a couple of entire pies were still in their boxes in there along side a spraycan of cream which had obviously been forgotten.

The tone of the conversation changed slowly, a little more heat entering your father's voice as he said more stridently "…boarding school…" and your mother beginning to work to mollify him. Underneath these familiar voices though Finn was talking steadily and, this time, his hit-or-miss persuasive skills seemed to be doing a definate hit.

Which still doesn't sound too bad. Mom's pretty level-headed, right? Man, those pies smell pretty good…

The bakery which made the pies was a fairly expensive one, although the exact source of the money that Finn used to pay for this all and other gifts being something which always seemed to slip away from conversations, and seemed worth the money. However even as she was getting started on a glorious key lemon confection the three adults had stood up and started back over towards the table.

Kayla hurriedly swallows her current bite of lemony joy, wiping her mouth on a napkin and clearly readying herself for The Talk.

"Kayla," Her mother said softly as she said down at the table, taking her daughters hand in her own, "I know that you're doing very well a at school, and have friends there, but with this little change we might need to discuss things. You see, you'll need to be able to learn how to use what you have been… given and there aren't many ways to do that. Finn doesn't feel confident about instructing you himself so…"

She paused then her husband spoke up, "Kayla, there's a place we are probably going to have to send you. It's called Whateley Academy…"

«Session Ends»

Notes: And the PDP underestimates the stubborness of a teenage girl…